How to make cleaning fun – 5 ways to get motivated as an adult

No one likes cleaning their home – this is how to make the process a little more entertaining

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When trying to find ways to make cleaning fun, most of the answers revolve around trying to get children involved – but what if you want to make the task less daunting for yourself? 

While cleaning will never be as entertaining as going out for the day or binging your favorite TV series, there are some simple methods you can use to help make your tasks run a little more smoothly.

From dance parties to mindfulness, these are the five cleaning tips professional cleaners use to make their job more fulfilling. 

How to make cleaning fun

Much like making decluttering fun, the method you choose will depend on your preferences and how you are feeling that day. The trick is finding an approach that helps to take your mind off the irritation of cleaning without getting distracted. Watching TV in the background may help one person, but be very disruptive to the cleaning process for you, so try a few things out until something sticks. 

1. Curate a cleaning playlist

High Angle View Of Mobile Phone On Bed

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One of the best ways to get motivated to clean is to hype yourself up and build up some energy you can expend on cleaning. The best way to do this? Cranking up the music and turning it into a singalong or dance party, suggests Ryan Knoll, cleaning expert and owner of Tidy Casa. 

‘Music can transform any task. Create a playlist of your favorite upbeat songs to keep the energy up. Ever dance with a vacuum cleaner? Time to start!’

If music isn’t your jam, then a podcast could be a better replacement if you are looking for something to concentrate on so that cleaning becomes a mindless task, adds Lisa Hill of Spotless Cleaning. ‘Whether you love true crime or listening to your favorite celebrities gossip, a podcast can make cleaning time fly as you focus on something other than dusting.’

For many people, it can be a good idea to avoid having the TV on in the background as it can give you a visual distraction. If needs must, however, sticking on a ‘clean with me’ video on YouTube can help to inspire you to get your own chores done.

2. Gamify the cleaning process

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Games are not just for children – they can help to inspire adults to clean and tidy too. Cleaning expert Ryan Knoll suggests embracing your inner child and trying something like the roll-the-dice cleaning game, or even just setting a timer and challenging yourself to get as many tasks as possible done in a set amount of time. ‘This sense of urgency can make cleaning more engaging, less monotonous, and will cut down cleaning time,’ he explains.

If working to a timer, be careful you don’t rush the tasks. It is better to do fewer tasks and do them properly than to do many and have to go back over them because they aren’t truly clean

3. Work as a team

'Encouraging your family to declutter and clean can feel like a mammoth task, but it is a great way to make cleaning both quicker and more fun,' says Michael Gottron, cleaning expert and owner of Germicidal Maids: ‘Involving friends or family in a cleaning routine can turn it into a social event, making the chores feel less burdensome and more like a shared responsibility.’

Employing your family or housemates not only helps to clean your house when you’re too busy, but it also means you can all enjoy a chore-free weekend, too. 

4. Invest in quality gadgets

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Having all the tools and supplies you need can remove one of the major barriers to cleaning your home, but investing in some fun tools and supplies that smell gorgeous is a great way to make cleaning more fun and the results more satisfying, suggests Will Cotter, cleaning expert and COO of FreshSpace Cleaning.

‘Believe me, it’s also about investing in quality cleaning tools. Before you hit the shops, take a second to figure out what needs to go on your ultimate cleaning supplies list. What areas need a little attention? Knowing this will help you invest wisely in the tools that matter most. 

‘If you have decorations that need to be wiped down, buy microfiber cloths to help you remove dust. If your vacuum has seen better days, it might be time for an upgrade. Newer models come with features like HEPA filters for cleaner air, adjustable suction power, and attachments that make reaching tricky spots a breeze. For brushes? Have heavy-duty ones with durable bristles. And look for comfy handles that won't leave your hands sore.’

5. Make cleaning mindful

When we think of mindful homes, we most likely focus our attention on creating cozy corners for hobbies and fitting a spa bathroom. However, the smaller parts of your day matter too – including your cleaning, Angela Rubin, professional cleaner and owner of Hellamaid, urges. 

She suggests practicing mindfulness while cleaning by focusing on the task at hand. ‘Pay attention to the textures, smells, and the satisfaction of completing each step. This can turn cleaning into a therapeutic and stress-relieving activity, especially when you use products you love or DIY cleaning solutions with soothing essential oils for an olfactory experience.’

FAQs

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How do I start to like cleaning?  

If you want to stop stressing about cleaning, start by breaking the tasks down into smaller, more manageable chunks that do not take as much time out of your day. One of the main reasons why people grow to hate cleaning is because it takes more time away from our downtime. Doing little and often, spending no longer than 20 minutes on an area at a time will help – and means cleaning is less overwhelming too.  

Why do I have no motivation to clean? 

If you have little to no motivation to clean it could be because you are burnt out and exhausted from your already busy life. Take a step back from a few responsibilities where you can, talk to friends and family about the amount you have on your plate to see if they can help, and prioritize self-care (be it having a relaxed day every so often or talking to a professional) can help you to establish a sense of order in your life that can give you the motivation to complete everyday tasks such as cleaning again without feeling completely drained.  


'When trying to make cleaning more fun, it is essential to go into it with the right mindset, or you will hate it no matter what you try,' concludes cleaning expert Ryan Knoll. If you go into cleaning telling yourself how much you hate the task, you will inevitably hate it.

‘Anything can be fun as long as we’re going in with the right attitude,’ he assures. ‘Set yourself up for success with a positive attitude and focus on how nice the space will feel when you’re done.’

Chiana Dickson
Writer

Chiana has been at Homes & Gardens for a year, having started her journey in interior journalism as part of the graduate program. She spends most of her time producing content for the Solved section of the website, helping readers get the most out of their homes through clever decluttering, cleaning, and tidying tips – many of which she tests and reviews herself in her home in Lancaster to ensure they will consistently deliver for her readers and dabbles in the latest design trends. She also has a first-class degree in Literature from Lancaster University.